Nigeria Tam Tam: .....dialogue to save the nation.

Again, dialogue to save the nation 

THE renewed clamour by many prominent Nigerians, from all parts of the country, for a national discourse in which the country’s multifarious problems can be tabled does not deserve to be treated with disdain. For one, the call is a reminder that all is not well with the country. And for another, there is very little to show for the years, efforts and resources expended to move the nation along the path of the progress desired by all Nigerians. Rather, the leaders continue to pretend that what the country needs is no more than palliatives. This pretext, from all indications, cannot take the country anywhere.

When in the life of a nation the ship of state starts to wobble uncontrollably, it stands to reason that all those on board that vessel must sit down and consider in what ways an imminent shipwreck can be averted.

The British colonial government once presided over two distinct protectorates. In 1914, without consultation, both protectorates were merged into one and called Nigeria.  At the dawn of independence in 1960, it was clear that the compulsory amalgamation of diverse, religious, cultural and ethnic entities was unworkable without the devolution of substantial powers to the federating units.  The result was the creation of regional governments that were autonomous and which made contributions to the central government for the sustenance of those services, including defence and foreign affairs that were best handled by a central authority. They operated a revenue formula that was based on derivation.  The entry of the military into government in 1966 saw the dismantling of the successful regional structures and the creation of essentially, a unitary form of government that was still called federal. The result is an all-powerful federal government that serves as paymaster to mostly weak 36 states, lacking in the ability to invoke the ‘federal principle,’ and have become subservient and lazy. ...Read More...